Hi Team,

Looking for guidance on PF. I work with a start-up that has less than 20 members, and we are yet to start our PF account owing to this reason. I have received a request from one of our current employees asking for advice on PF transfer from his previous company. The employee has been asked to transfer/Withdraw PF from previous organization to his current PF account. Since he doesn't want to withdraw, the transfer is the only option but he is not sure where to transfer since our current organization's PF account is not yet active.

Also note that PF in his previous organization was managed by 3rd party vendor which was managed separately and wasn’t linked to his government provided UAN. He has a UAN number where all the companies PF account numbers where he has worked so far except his previous organization are listed.

Can you please guide/advise on this process. Is there an alternative to transferring his previous organization PF to one of the old PF account under UAN?

Kindly advice as to how to address this issue.


From India, Chennai
Partner - Risk Management
Doctor Siva Global Hr


Dear Colleague,

As per the provisions of Employees Provident Fund ( Misc Provisions) Act 1952, the PF accumulations can be transferred from different account numbers but the UAN number of the member will remain same and will not change at all. Whether Private Trust managed PF or Government PF all are having one single UAN number for a member.

Hence there is no possibility of any 3rd party in this. The member need to check this closely and go deeper on understanding what was the issue here. The accumulations are to be transferred to the current employment based Account Number in the very same UAN number by due application. This can be done only when you have your establishment registered and you get your Establishment Code number. Till such time or else till he changes to next employment where his future establishment has PF establishment code, then he can move his transfer.

Options you need to look into after consulting your PF Enforcement Officer of your location:

- Now if you had employed more number of PF members in your current organization, the already PF covered members shall not be deprived of the PF and EPS benefit and in this case you need to go and voluntarily register your establishment for PF Coverage and to get code number for your establishment.

- Practically if you are engaging only one or 2 employees who were previously covered under PF/EPS, then consult your PF Enforcement Officer and keep the employee as " exempted" without PF component and deduction until you come into the coverage of PF for your establishment. (If you do not want to cover voluntarily until the Act itself covers by its own)

These are suggestions and you may check with other colleagues for better ideas.

From India, Chennai
Thank you Dr Sivakumar Sir for your valuable and timely advice.

Just to add to my query, the employee's previous organization is an exempted trust, hence the only way out here would be to advice the employee to withdraw the money given that it will take time for us as an establishment to register with EPF and get our establishment code no etc even voluntarily.

Thank you

From India, Chennai

PF can be held in the previous account including trust for any period of time. But the interest stops after 3 years. So he can continue to keep the money till he goes to an organisation which has pf and then transfer it
From India, Mumbai

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